Country Cars: TAC declares silver, grey cars less safe than white ones

White is right when it comes to avoiding crashes. The Renault Megane RS265. Picture: JEREMY BANNISTER

White is right when it comes to avoiding crashes. The Renault Megane RS265. Picture: JEREMY BANNISTER

Dark grey, black and even silver are safe colours in terms of resale value but not on the road.

TAC road safety manager Samantha Cockfield said white cars and light coloured cars were easier to see in all light conditions and were therefore statistically less likely to be involved in a crash.

The Courier found the most popular colours for cars sold at Ballarat car dealerships across a range of brands, were shades of dark grey, black and silver although white is making a comeback.

Ms Cockfield said a Monash University Accident Research Centre study showed orange, yellow and white cars had the lowest crash risk in all types of light conditions - night, overcast, bright sun - while grey, silver, red and black cars were more likely to be involved in a crash, particularly during daylight hours or at twilight. 

"This shows that drivers are best advised to opt for white or lighter coloured cars to improve their visibility on the road," Ms Cockfield said. 

"But if you are driving a darker coloured vehicle, one way you can improve your visibility on the road is by using daytime running lights. 

"Anyone looking to buy a vehicle should head to howsafeisyourcar.com.au to ensure their new car is the safest in its class." 

The data was based on police reported crash data in Victoria and Western Australia during 1987-2004, and was statistically significant among the most popular colours.

The report found silver and grey cars were 10 per cent more likely to be involved in a crash than white cars, red was 8 per cent more likely, black 6 per cent and blue 5 per cent more likely. 

However, for crashes which occurred at dawn or dusk, black cars were 47 per cent more likely to be involved in a crash than white cars, grey 25 per cent more likely, and silver 15 per cent more likely.

There was comparatively little difference between colours and incidence of crashes at night, however, with black cars marginally less likely to be involved in crashes than white cars.

Of the most popular colours, red was worst at night.

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